It has become increasingly clear to those of us who consult with schools on a national level that unless we are willing to reimagine systems for professional learning, teaching practice won’t change and students won’t have access to the great teaching they deserve. The Mirage study from The New Teacher Project (http://tinyurl.com/qe6qjt9) validated the importance of reexamining our approach to professional development. When we created our Blended Professional Learning series, we did so with several ideas in mind.
- We need to keep leaders in their buildings and teachers in classrooms during the instructional day.
- Adult learners are autonomous and self-directed. They need to be free to learn at a time, place and pace of their choosing.
- Interaction and engagement are keys to adult learning.
- Learning must be meaningful and relevant.
- Impact of adult learning on changes in educator practice and student learning must be embedded throughout the system.
Our Blended Professional Learning courses are delivered using a “blend” of onsite, facilitated learning and virtual learning, creating a meaningful but manageable experience for all participants. Learners begin the course with a face-to-face introduction to the content and an orientation to the virtual platform. Throughout the course, learners can access information from the Blended Learning platform anywhere, anytime, while having access to valuable feedback from instructors in the classroom and online. Assessments are built in to each course that provide learners with immediate feedback. All participants share experiences and lessons learned, including changes in practice and student learning.
Is it time to rethink your professional learning system? There is no time to waste. Our students deserve the very best we have to offer.